How Important Is Time In China?

Timeliness is valued in a variety of ways across all civilizations. We are instructed that keeping time in China is very essential; thus, what does it mean to be late? The Germans have zero tolerance for those who are late. In France, being late by 10 minutes results in an additional 20 minutes of waiting. That's what the stereotypes say. There are many misconceptions about China. What does China think about those who are late? Discover!


Similar to the education systems found in other Asian countries, China's is quite regimented. Attendance in class is required at universities, and students' final marks reflect their absences. If you are absent from too many of the required courses, you will not pass the course. In Chinese universities and institutions, being late to class may cost you up to six points. Peking University is one of the educational institutions that deducts points for students who are late to class. Your GPA might suffer as a result of your chronic tardiness. In China, teachers look down on tardiness in the classroom.


In China, being on time demonstrates respect. In China, being late to work will not assist your chances of being hired. If it is at all feasible, go over your route the day before, and give yourself a half-hour more than you normally would. Your prospective employer won't mind if you show up 20 minutes early on your first day of work.

As an employee, tardiness may either be a serious offense or a very minor one. It is dependent on your career as well as the culture of the company. Soar!

You are probably aware that China places a high value on education. And this covers professors and other academics as well. The instructors in China are not allowed to be tardy. Students that consistently arrive late should be prepared for a reprimand. It is the parents that are concerned, not the school. Keep to the schedule.

Office Work Conducted in Private

Work in a conventional office? It's possible that you've observed that being late isn't the most pressing problem. According to my observations, it is not a big deal if you are a few minutes late getting to your place of employment in China as long as you carry out the following two responsibilities: (which might be never, or it might be on Sunday morning).

• Punching in and out on a daily basis is appreciated by HR. They don't care what time you do it as long as the average number of hours you put in each week is 44.

Vacancies in the public sector offices

Work in the public sector in China if you want to sleep in and get out of the office earlier than usual. You will have job security as a public employee, something that private sector workers can only fantasize about. It is not frowned upon by bosses or colleagues to arrive late for work, and it is normal for employees to nap during the two-hour lunch break (which may go for three hours). There are very few exceptions to this rule in China's public sector.


You have moved to a new country and are anxious to establish a positive reputation in your new workplace. Today you are running late because you went to too much KTV or because your Ofo was too sluggish. Relax! Maintain your silence and go inside your office or cubicle. Who really cares, and who's keeping track of this anyway?

If you're 10 minutes late, don't contact or text your supervisor. Nobody cares. If you don't make up the time, human resources will be watching you closely.

If you are a teacher, you need to let your administrator know if you are going to be late. Every school has a policy about tardiness, which is often discussed at orientation. Also, please explain the delay. ESL schools are used to having foreign employees who are unreliable and (barely) able to perform, and as a result, they will dismiss repeat violators and withdraw their work visa.

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